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General Question Regarding Software

 
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hakbrk



Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 3
Location: Brazil

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 9:06 am    Post subject: General Question Regarding Software Reply with quote

All,
I've been reading this forum for quite some time and would describe my building level as in the planning phase of my project. Due to current location and time constraints I can't get started yet, but hopefully within the year. One question I have which looks like it has been answered in one form or another is regarding the software interface between the cockpit and FS. Will it work to install add on aircraft software specifically some of the 767 or 747 programs out there and then within that aircraft software configure the key board commands? If this is correct that makes sense, my confusion comes when I try to picture how the feedback from the software to the cockpit is accomplished, by that I mean what tells a certain led to light up, or in the case of a motorized throttle quadrant what tells the motors when and how much to turn? Thanks in advance for the help.

John
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mauriceb



Joined: 22 Aug 2005
Posts: 1051
Location: Gravenhurst, Ontario - Canada

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John,

I think the answer to your questions depends on what it is exactly that you are or will be building. From what you are saying, it sounds like you want a generic flight deck as opposed to a specific type. With a specific type, be it Boeing XXX or Airbus XXX or whatever, it really makes no sense to use add-on aircraft software since the flight deck would not match what you are flying. To use an extreme example, you would not fly a Cessna 172 in a Boeing 747 flight deck Smile

If you are talking about using add-ons such as PDMG 737 or 747 for instance, again it does not really make sense with a flight deck, since you would only be seeing the external view anyway. You could use those programs for the flight model but not for the instrumentation.

Anyway, before anyone could really answer your question, we would need to know what is the scope of your planned project. A motorized throttle can work on many different aircraft types since there are FS offsets that can be used to drive servos or stepper motors. The FS offsets are exactly the same for all aircrafts and the only difference is that the FS program will use the offsets in slightly different ways for each aircraft type.

From my own experience when I started not too long ago, it was all very mysterious until I started interfacing a few switches & LED's using a Phidget 8/8/8 board that has a USB interface and a very easy custom program that you can use to interface some switches, LEDs, potentiometers and even servos to FS9. Once you experiment a bit with some real hardware, everything will start to make much more sense to you. Incidentally, Phidgets is definitely not the only player in this field, just one that I am familiar with Smile

Anyway, tell us what you are planning to build and you will likely get a better response to your questions. Is this going to be a full flight deck? Are you going to use Project Magenta software or are you relying on FSx or add-ons such as PDMG? Do you want to fly different aircraft types? etc..

Cheers,

Maurice
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hakbrk



Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 3
Location: Brazil

PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I'm aiming for is a full flight deck or as close as I can get to it, I'm up in the air between the 767 or 747. After reading your reply it makes sense what your saying about the use of add on software, that really doesn't make sense unless as you say you are after the flight model. Looks like the thing to do would be to dive in with something like the MIP and start interfacing it at which point the proverbial light bulb should light up. Look forward to many months of questions and answers.
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mauriceb



Joined: 22 Aug 2005
Posts: 1051
Location: Gravenhurst, Ontario - Canada

PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hakbrk wrote:
Looks like the thing to do would be to dive in with something like the MIP and start interfacing it at which point the proverbial light bulb should light up. Look forward to many months of questions and answers.


You got it. You can read all you want about all this, but you really need to dive in as you said for things to start making sense. There is very good news in the horizon though. Depending on how much work you want to do yourself, there will be more & more plug & play solutions to choose from. FDS has very exciting plans that will make life much easier for those of us who don't want to spend half their life building and who want to fly as quickly as possible. I've seen the new prototype MCP at FDS, and this is as simple as you can make it. Just plug it in into a USB port and you are in business; and that just one of the 'goodies'.

Maurice



Anyway, good luck
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